Tugger Director Responds to Fraud Charges
“Tugger the Jeep Who Wanted To Fly” is no masterpiece, it is no great feat in 3D animation and it doesn’t even run longer than 65 minutes! What the movie is is a testament to both the best and worst of human potential. On the positive side, for the many people like me who invested so much time, energy and talent into “Tugger,” it was NOT for the money, it was a creative passionate statement. On the negative side, for a few investors who because of the big corporate names and talents attached to the little film, it was the goal of local fame and fortune.
Both sides can and do co-exist in Hollywood today! Both sides, (in the real business world of Hollywood) understand that there is a co-existing relationship that must flourish if anyone is to be successful. We have seen this struggle of opposites in Hollywood since D.W Griffith and Charlie Chaplin battled the then major studios in the 1920s and 30s. In more resent history we have seen disgruntled studios and even crew members spread negative word and refuse credit on films such as “Rocky.” We’ve seen great directors like James Cameron verbally trash for years by the press, studios and film crews, yet continue to deliver masterpieces like “Avatar.” And trust I do NOT compare my talents to these great men and films!
My point, my rebuttal to the stories about the “Tugger” film and myself is; that there are many unknown struggling artists just like me out there today who with the same passion will always strive to make the seemingly impossible film a reality. Artists and filmmakers will today and forever continue to go after their dreams with the greatest of intent, honesty and passion. Making "Tugger" was my dream, but it was also a dream come true for the artists who worked so hard with me to make sure we completed it. And we faithfully completed the film not just for ourselves, but for the investors who put their money and faith into our dreams.
All aspects in the making of the "Tugger" film were transparent and upfront! We started with a dream but no funding. And ended up with a completed movie that in the process of making it secured some of the most amazing corporate branded partners and voice talent a little independent film could wish for! And all for $2.5 million dollars! Did I fail in our end goal of the filmmaking back its cost? Yes! Was I naïve to the realities of the distribution business? Yes! But even with its shortcomings I am also proud of the little film we did make, AND the artists who I was honored to be able to work with five years ago!
To anyone reading this rebuttal that is even thinking of making an independent animated film I say; make your film! Do not let the problems I faced, and continue to face discourage you! Learn from the experiences of mine and others, because if you are honest, (regardless of what others might say) it will show in the body of your work! For the independent filmmaker, movies are a medium of artistic truth! If the filmmaker is honest it will show in your work, in the stories you have chosen to tell!
In closing I wish to thank AWN for giving me this opportunity to rebuttal. For the past five years I have sat back while certain articles and blogs have spread gross misinformation about the "Tugger" movie and me, I hope that this rebuttal helps shed light on the truth.